Dell sees early demand from schools for Windows 8 tablet

by Doug Drinkwater

March 11 2013

Dell's Latitude 10 Essentials tablet is being marketed towards education and small-and-medium businesses
Dell's Latitude 10 Essentials tablet is being marketed towards education and small-and-medium businesses

Dell says that a number of schools are already deploying the Latitude 10, despite the Windows 8 tablet having only been available since the turn of the year.

Dell has two versions of the Latitude 10 (the standard model and the security-enhanced Essentials version) and says that demand is already picking up from education.

The Texas-based computing giant says that four education establishments have now deployed the 10-inch Latitude 10, with these comprising Fargo Public Schools in North Dakota, Southern Illinois University, Spartanburg School District 3 in South Carolina and Westwood Independent Schools in Texas.

(See TabTimes' Education channel)

Fargo Public Schools explained in a press release that the school opted for Dell’s offering because students could “produce information as easily as they can consume it”, while Southern Illinois University did the same to boost student engagement levels and reduce textbook costs.

Spartanburg Schools District 3 took to Dell’s offering to deliver a more “personalized, self-directed” approach to learning, while the Westwood Independent Schools spoke of expanding learning outside the classroom.

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Dell, which is hoping to go privately-owned again, teamed with Intel recently and commissioned Harris Interactive to carry out a survey of 203 U.S. school system administrators and IT decision makers to get a take on the tablet management challenges faced by schools today.

And while the results showed that an impressive 53% of IT decision makers have already deployed tablets at their school, they also indicated that prepping tablets to play nice with a school’s existing IT infrastructure costs more than $1,400 on average.

These costs, according to the study, include tasks such as device management, resetting and setting passwords, configuring device access and developing user policies.

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A separate research report from Principled Technologies claimed that Dell’s Latitude 10 essentials configuration tablet is easier to deploy in large-scale education deployments than Apple’s iPad.

The study revealed that Dell’s offering requires 52% less time to manage and is 99% faster for software updates, a time-saving that apparently enables IT workers manage two Latitude 10 tablets in the time required to manage a single iPad.

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